Windows Replications Fail Due to VSS Errors

  • 7023339
  • 07-Sep-2018
  • 12-Sep-2018


PlateSpin Forge 11.x and up
PlateSpin Migrate 12.x and up
PlateSpin Protect 11.x and up


A replication of a Windows source workload fails with an error message related to VSS or BlockBasedVolumeWrapper.


Ensure each drive on the source workload being replicated has at least 10% - 15% free space of the total volume size (Ex: if C: is 100 GB in size, there should be at least 10 GB - 15 GB of free space).

The service Volume Shadow Copy in Services on the source workload should have its startup type set to Manual. The Volume Shadow Copy service should not be disabled. 

No other application on the source workload that uses VSS should be running at the time of the replication.  

If there is high disk utilization during the time of the replication, the snapshot creation can run into an error. If there is high disk utilization, please schedule the replication to run during a time when the disk is not being used heavily. 

In Windows Explorer on the source workload, right click on each drive and choose Configure Shadow Copies.
Look at the settings of each drive. Make sure each drive has the no limit option selected and that the drive selected to store the snapshots has the sufficient space, 10%-15% free space of the total volume size. 

Remove all existing shadow copies of each drive on the source. This can be done through the diskshadow utility. 
Open a command prompt by right clicking on its icon and choosing run as administrator and run this command.
The diskshadow command line utility will open. Run this command to remove all existing VSS snapshots.
delete shadows all
See this Microsoft document for more information about diskshadow.

Test the creation of shadow copies using "vssadmin create shadow" for each drive; these snapshots can be removed using diskshadow after the snapshots have been taken.
See this Microsoft link for more information about vssadmin. 

Test the creation and removal of VSS snapshots using PlateSpin.Athens.SnapshotExecution.exe. See TID 7017929


PlateSpin uses the native Windows service Volume Shadow Copy (VSS) to create snapshots of the volumes being replicated. If the snapshots cannot be taken, the job will not complete successfully. 

Additional Information

Consult with the system administrator of the source workload before making any changes this TID recommends. 

There may be errors related to the creation of VSS snapshots on the source workload's Event Viewer application and system logs. When submitting a service request, please export those logs as .evtx files and upload them to the service request along with the diagnostics of the failed replication job.